Lots on the marathon in this report from Alfons, also please check out Jere Longman‘s
superb piece on Haile and his chances in ING New York City. His piece can be found
at the www.nytimes.com website.
EME NEWS (OCT
EVENT ON SUNDAY
ATHENS (GRE): This year is the 2500th
anniversary of the Battle of Marathon, the little joust whose re-telling gave
rise to the race itself and, in passing may just have saved democracy for the
western world. The Greeks understandably – in need of some good news in these
economically straightened times – have gone to town on it. The cast list (in
best alphabetical order) includes Abel Anton of Spain, Italian Stefano Baldini,
Joan Benoit of the USA, Constantina Dita of Romania, Briton Ron Hill, Rosa Mota
of Portugal, and Kathrine Switzer of the US, who between them won four Olympic,
three world, and six European titles in the marathon, as well as breaching the
male bastion in Boston over 40 years ago. So if they can’t provide a word of
warning on what to do about a course that begins with a flat 10 kilometres out of
the town of Marathon itself, then rises 21k, before a steady 11k decline into
Athens, and the haven of the 1896 Olympic Stadium, then no one can help the
intrepid 12500 who will start at 0900 Sunday. Race favourite is Kenyan Jonathan
Kipkorir who ran 2.07.31 in Paris
last year and won this year Mainichi Marathon in 2:10:50 said, “I heard it’s a
tough course. But when I heard about the history, I asked my manager to send me
here for this fantastic race. The organisers would like us the go for the
course record (Baldini’s gold medal 2.10.55 in 2004), and if the weather is
good, then maybe we can go out in 65-66 for halfway. I know I’m favourite, but
anyone who can run 2.10 is a potential winner”. Another name to watch is Jacob
Yator, who ran a personal best 2.09.02 in winning in Enschede, Netherlands
last year. Add four other colleagues who are under or just over 2.10, and Paul
Lekuraa, who set the race (as opposed to the course) record of 2.12.42 in 2008,
and the 28th edition of this revived Athens Classic Marathon could be on the
way to matching the legend which spawned it. The Russians, Irina Permitina and
Olga Glok would do well to beware of Eri Hayakawa of Japan in the women’s race. Writes
Pat Butcher, more on his blog globerunner.org.
ROMA (ITA): G4 will start to
work also in athletics. Representatives of athletics federations from Germany, France,
Spain and Italy will meet during this weekend in Rome. They will discuss
their relations with IAAF and EA as well as with other international sports
bodies. The idea behind the meeting is to share and export the knowledge that
each federation applies in different areas. Informs RFEA website.
BELIEVES IN BLAKE
KINGSTON (JAM): Coach Glen Mills believes the
best is yet to come from Yohan Blake who improved last season to impressive 19.78 in the 200 m. With that time he is
second fastest Jamaican ever at the distance, even faster than the legendary
Don Quarrie. Mills, speaking of Blake, said: “I think he is going to be an
outstanding ‘A’ class sprinter. Presently, he has a lot of rough edges and a
lot of technical deficiencies. He still has a mountain to climb in terms of
really becoming a finished sprinter, but he is so talented, that while the
process is being worked on, you will see flashes of brilliance.”
NO LONDON FOR FERNANDEZ
MADRID (ESP): President of Spanish Olympic
Committee Alejandro Blanco confirmed for Marca that former European walking
champion Francisco Fernandez will not be able to compete at London 2012 Games.
He is currently banned for two years and under new IOC rules he is out of next
games. His ban ends on February 10, 2012. He will also not be able to compete
at European Championships in Helsinki
that year because this shorter version of the event is not having walking
NEW YORK (USA): RRW writes that
veteran Olympic sports journalist Jere Longman of the New York Times just
released a feature story on Haile Gebrselassie’s marathon career and whether
the two-time Olympic gold medallist best known for running fast on flat courses
can conquer a tough course and an even tougher field at the ING New York City
Marathon on November 7. Also, at the Times New York City Marathon blog, readers
are encouraged to submit questions for 1996 Olympic marathoner Linda Somers
Smith who, at the age of 49, will be running New York for the first time.
Another interesting item fro Race Results Weekly points out this fall Kenyan
marathon domination. Of 42 marathons in 24 countries with international elite
fields men from Kenya
have won 38 of them, a winning percentage of 90%. Ethiopian men have won the
(MON): The IAAF announced the conclusion of a deal by IEC in sports, IAAF’s
exclusive media rights agency for Europe and Africa,
with the company Sports Extra Time (SET) for the Sub Saharan African territory
for the period of 2011 to 2013. Under the terms of the deal, SET will acquire a
package of media rights including terrestrial, free to air and pay TV satellite
rights as well as internet and mobile rights for the IAAF World Athletics
Series to 2013 in
the territory. The deal covers all of terrestrial Sub Saharan Africa with the
exclusion of South Africa
where IEC has already concluded agreements.
LONDON (GBR): Mike Summers is to leave
England Athletics after three years as chief executive, it has been announced.
As insidethegames writes day-to-day responsibility for leading the governing
body through its ongoing modernisation process will be taken over by current
chairman of the organisation John Graves.
BREMEN (GER): German 400 m hurdler Jonna Tilgner
will have a baby break. She expectes a child next April. The national champion
2008 and 2009 plans to return to the track in 2012. Her best is 55.71 from 2009
and she is world 2009 semifinalist in the hurdles and Olympic relay finalist
JOHANNESBURG (RSA): 800 m world champion Caster
Semenya can’t find a sponsor because of the negative publicity. South African
media are writing. She is struggling to pay for her running and has even met
with and accepted an offer of help from two young South Africans, who say they
“rallied a few friends on Facebook” to raise money for the athlete. Earlier
this month, Semenya even met with the Facebook group which intends to sell
T-shirts and hold mobile car washes for cash – an unthinkable situation for a
world champion athlete to resort to. Michael Seme, Semenya’s coach, told the AP
she receives a salary from the South African government, is provided with
running clothes by a sportswear company, and receives help with tuition fees
and the use of training facilities from the University of Pretoria.
But there’s no endorsements.
ACAPULCO (MEX): During the ANOC (Association
of National Olympic Committees) General Assembly in Acapulco Cheikh ThiarÃ©,
Director of the IAAF President’s Executive Office, was presented with the ANOC
Order of Merit Award for “outstanding contribution to the activities of the
Association of National Olympic Committees”. A former member of the Executive
Council of ANOC, on which he served two consecutive mandates, Cheikh ThiarÃ© was
a Member of the ANOCA (Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa)
Executive Board for 8 years (two consecutive mandates which ended in July
2010), and served as President of ANOCA Zone II which comprises eight
countries. Informs IAAF.
MOSCOW (RUS): The track magazine Spikes was
presented on Friday for first time in Russian language during the Russian
Athletics Federation general assembly.
MELBOURNE (AUS): Commonwealth
Games champion Steve Hooker has been announced as nominee for the fourth annual
Sports Performer Awards in Australia.
The nomination caps a stunning year for 28-year-old Hooker that has seen him
take out world indoor, Continental Cup and Commonwealth Games gold, and contest
all seven pole vault competitions on the Diamond League tour. Writes Athletics Australia. The
Western Australian-based star, who trains under the guidance of coach Alex
Parnov, is now in the running for both the Sports Performer of the Year and
IAAF World Athlete of the Year awards. The winners of the five awards
categories will be announced at a gala function at Melbourne’s Crown Casino on Tuesday November
LJUBLJANA (SLO): Slovenian shot put record
holder Miran Vodovnik will pass the indoor season in order to concentrate on
the summer competitions.
(CAN): The Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre (CACC) and Athletics Canada (AC)
are hosting a National Sprints Conference at the University of Toronto
November 12 – 14. The conference will bring in multiple world renowned coaches
including Tom Tellez, coach of nine time Olympic champion Carl Lewis; Loren
Seagrave, coach of three time World long jump champion Dwight Phillips; Gary
Winckler, former coach of 2003 world 100mH champion Perdita Felicien; Toronto
based coach Anthony McCleary, coach of 2009 world silver medalist Priscilla
Lopes-Schliep as well as many other Canadian National Event Group Coaches,
athletic therapists and sports scientists from the Canadian Sport Centre
Ontario. Informs Athletics Canada.
MOSCOW (RUS): Readers of Rusathletics.com
website voted for newcomers of the year in Russian athletics. Biggest number of
votes went to 400 m
runner Kseniya Ustalova (Barcelona silver individually and gold in relay) and
young walker Valeriy Filipchuk who achieved bronze at IAAF Race Walking World
Cup in Mexico and later won the World junior title in Moncton.
MARSEILLE (FRA): The 32th
edition international Marseille-Cassis Classique (20.308m) this Sunday will
have title defender Meseret Mengistu as the favourite in the women’s race while
her Ethiopian teammates Lelisa Desisa and Deriba Merga will try to offer a
first male victory to Ethiopia.
IAAF is writing.
STARICA (RUS, Oct 24): Veteran
Vyacheslav Shabunin is still better than his younger rivals. He won the 21st
half marathon in Tversk Region in very solid 1:05:24 for age of 41.
ALGES (POR, Oct 24): 30th
edition of Corrida de Tejo winners were at 10 km Rui Silva (29:13) and
Jessica Augusto (33:27).
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